ATCO Australia, Australian Gas Networks and Woodside Energy are among seven companies shortlisted by ARENA for a $70m competitive funding round for renewable hydrogen development projects.
The Renewable Hydrogen Development Funding Round opened in April to help fast track commercialisation of electrolyser technology and contribute to an Australian Government goal of producing hydrogen for less than $2 per kilogram.
During the initial application stage, ARENA said it received 36 expressions of interest, totalling more than $3bn of renewable hydrogen projects.
The seven shortlisted applicants are:
- APT Management Services
- ATCO Australia
- Australian Gas Networks
- BHP Billiton Nickel West
- Engie Renewables Australia
- Macquarie Corporate Holdings
- Woodside Energy
ARENA said it expects to award two of the seven projects with funding by mid 2021, with construction expected to commence in 2022.
Four of the projects are based in Western Australia and one each in Queensland, Tasmania and Victoria.
The total grant requested across all seven projects is $200m, with a total project value of almost $500m.
Each project will deploy a 10MW or larger electrolyser made up of various end uses including transport, gas injection, renewable ammonia production, power and industrial use.
ARENA CEO Darren Miller said, “We’re excited to be able to invite these seven projects to submit full applications for ARENA funding.”
“Our ultimate goal is to bring the price of renewable hydrogen down to be competitive with other forms of energy and be at the forefront of renewable hydrogen production.”
“The best way to help build a hydrogen industry is to support projects that will help demonstrate the technology at scale, and share the lessons learned to help the industry as a whole reduce risk and costs as well as increase efficiency.”
“A thriving renewable hydrogen production sector will not only help our heavy industry and transport sectors to reduce emissions, but will provide the platform for Australia to export renewable energy and reduce emissions beyond our borders.”
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said the government’s partnership with industry will help Australia become a world leader in hydrogen production and exports which will importantly create new jobs as the Australian economy recovers from Covid-19.
“The government is committed to building a world-class hydrogen industry and this ARENA funding round is central to that,” Taylor said.
“The total grant asks for the shortlisted projects is over $200m, and with a total project value of almost $500m.”
“This strong interest from industry reinforces Australia’s untapped potential in hydrogen and today’s announcement moves us closer to realising that potential.”
“This round, along with the Clean Energy Finance Corporation’s (CEFC) $300m Advancing Hydrogen Fund, will be key to bringing down the production costs of hydrogen and making the technology commercial,” Taylor said.
The seven projects shortlisted are invited to submit a full application in the next stage and may also be considered for financing from the CEFC.